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    Summer break is the perfect opportunity to get back into reading. Adam Silvera’s (2017) novel, They Both Die at the End, can serve as a stepping stone into the realm of reading. The pace is fast, action-packed, and develops loveable characters. Also, Silvera switches point of view each chapter where narration mainly focuses on the protagonists, […]
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    If there’s one book that I believe everyone should read once in their life, it’s my favorite book – Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi. From my course, Queer Literature under Dr. Bill Albertini, I discovered Emezi’s Freshwater (2018). Once more, my course, Creative Writing Thesis Workshop under Professor Amorak Huey, was instructed to present our favorite […]

Alvin and the Chipmunks

Before an in-depth analysis or discussion of this movie takes place, it is necessary to make one small observation. We are talking about a movie featuring singing chipmunks. If that alone has never caught your humorous interest, you have no business with what you may be about to read. “Alvin and the Chipmunks” is the newest family film that rings in with true Christmas fashion.

It was around 50 years ago when Ross Bagdassarian conjured up the idea of three singing chipmunks. Who would have thought that today the world would be talking about them as a big budget live action/animation film? When you look at the success of Alvin, Simon and Theodore over the years it is amazing to note that it is largely due to their cuteness. Of course, that quality gets attributed through their fascinatingly high-pitched singing voices, but now the legend of the chipmunks lives on through three adorable computer animated fuzz balls that look confusingly similar without their color-coordinated sweaters.

This incarnation of “Alvin and the Chipmunks” begins by establishing the characters of Dave (Jason Lee) and the chipmunks before they ever combined paths. Dave is a struggling musician who, with his otherwise bland character, can’t get his songs sold. Meanwhile, the chipmunks are busy packing their tree with food for the winter when, suddenly, their joyous rendition of the popular song “Bad Day” by Daniel Powter is interrupted as someone begins cutting down their tree for the approaching Christmas season.

Being set during the Christmas season, it was easy for the filmmakers to extend the film’s themes of family and the importance of a guiding character in a child’s life. When Dave finally encounters the singing chipmunks and the hilarity momentarily subsides, we see Dave’s importance is more than just screaming Alvin’s name in anger. With the chipmunks longing for a family with the reluctant Dave, the film carries good-natured themes for a children’s movie.

This movie is still not without its flaws. Some side characters like the scheming record producer, become annoyingly comical and some high points of humor features juvenile rudeness. With all of these bad qualities, it is hard to forget the contributions that the chipmunks give in their lovable personalities. Parents may find themselves enduring some moments rather than enjoying them, but if anything, adults will reminisce in the film’s nostalgic purposes while their children will have no problem enjoying all the comic mischief the chipmunks inevitably get into. Ultimately, this is as good as a semi-live action film about singing chipmunks will ever be.

Two and a half stars out of four

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